Why Use Boilerplate?
One of the key issues with Open-Source software is the need for coding standards. Coding standards help the development community to read and understand each others code and ensure the overall quality and security of the resultant software.
WordPress has a set of published coding standards for WordPress development including developing themes and plugins. To help plugin developers get started with a new plugin that conforms to these standards, there is Plugin Boilerplate code that can be downloaded. This provides the overall structure of the plugin code and a framework in which the developer can begin work. To make it easier to get started with the Plugin Boilerplate there is a site that will generate the boilerplate code using your details and your chosen plugin name.
The download is a zip file containing the plugin folder together with the boilerplate read-me and change-log files.
If you used the boilerplate generator, the plugin folder is given the plugin name you provided. This folder contains:
If you compress the plugin folder into a zip file, you can add the plugin to WordPress from the Dashboard Plugin page using the Add New – Upload Plugin buttons. This will install the plugin which can then be activated. At this point your plugin does absolutely nothing.